Tuesday, September 06, 2005

P is for Paternity

OK, it was only a matter of time before I got to Paternity. I considered titling this 'p is for privacy' in an attempt to parallel the interesting (unique?, bizarre?) way the courts and women's movement utilized a 'right to privacy' as a justificantion for access to abortion (and wonder why it doesn’t apply to men), but decided that was too abstruse, and besides, I eventually want to do another piece on loss of privacy in divorce, soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo....

Let's talk about paternity. Imagine that the state has created a contractual state that you enter into without signing a contract, but by behavior - by doing a particular thing (like marriage). And further imagine that you can be compelled to fulfill that contract, even if you never did that particular thing. Such is the case with paternity law in most states.

Now first of all, it should be clear that except for totally insane wackos, (which unfortunately make up a large percentage of the human race, and apparently almost all family court judges), it is clear that 'having sex with someone' is not 'consenting to become a father', and one should not imply the other, or any of the responsibilities that go with it.

Admittedly, our legal system is in a different place. The general gist of legal thought on this subject is, more or less, that men all know that women can get pregnant, and so if men have something that resembles sex with women, they should be responsible for the woman's subsequent choice to have or not have that child, and spend much of the rest of their lives supporting it. This wrongheaded, misandrous argument is additionally bolstered by another idiotic argument, the argument that the offspring in question deserves to be parented by someone, especially someone other than the state, and therefore SOMEONE (i.e. someone male) must be tapped to support it. (…sounds like Dr Seuss – “someone, someone had to you see, so they picked out two someones, boy you and boy me”) The purported biological father being around, and having the necessary male parts to identify his sex, he is drafted. Note, DNA testing not usually being to hand, women can just name the father, his name ends up appearing on a support order, and months or years later, you find your salary disappearing down a black hole of child support, whether you were the actual parent or not.

The state has gone to extremes to protect their flawed logic of paternity. Fathers have been enslaved who were lied to about the reproductive status or intent of the mother. Fathers have been enslaved who had their sperm transferred from mouth to ... well, you get it, and fathers have been enslaved who were merely sperm-donors (2nd example). Even 'fathers' below the age of consent who were raped by older women - young boys - have been enslaved. And now that with DNA we can PROVE fatherhood, many presumed 'paternities' - with vast amounts of support paid and received - have been overturned. But usually not the support orders that go with those paternities - the courts want to preserve the wrong paternity for support reasons - they claim that 1) their original ruling stands as to paternity (even if proven false) because the court is never wrong (cough, cough) and besides the kid's mom needs the money, that 2) the child 'needs a father' and the only one to hand should fill the role, and 3) that the 'trauma' of having the child learn that he is not the biological child of the father who has been supporting the child for years is more important than the right of this non-father not to be enslaved. (Note, if we didn’t believe in slavery in this country in the first place, this wouldn’t be a problem, but unfortunately, we do.)

All of this may seem outrageous, unbelievable and insane to you, but this is just another part of our misandrous legal culture. Please follow the links, and read the stories, and support the National Center for Men's "Voluntary Fatherhood Project". Help win equal rights for men, or don't complain when some girlfriend from your high school, or college, or from 10, 15, even 18 years ago comes hunting for the potential father with the deepest pockets to pay her decade of back support, and you, (or if you are a woman, your boyfriend/fiancee/husband) are(/is) the one who fits the bill. ...Yeah, ...it can happen. Men get 30 days or so to contest paternity. The mother gets 18 years to change their minds about needing help and hunt some man down.

Oh, and let's think about what courts are incentivizing with all this... Having already made marriage something no financially prudent man would ever enter into - the courts are saying that you should only engage in one-night-stands with women who you don't tell your real name to, and will never see again.

Ma Jersey Sings:

Just date her once
Don't see her again
Or you'll forever be
Her Sugar-Man


-M

3 comments:

zeliphias said...

ooh strange, im glad im still virgin, no doubts there :)

MisAnDrope said...

Problem is, how do you prove your abstinence, and avoid child support? If a woman swears you are the father, and doesn’t provide your address, the brief (30-60 day) state period allotted for you to protest of your paternity is likely to go by (heck, years might go by) before you discover that some state has a huge child support bill with your name on it. And, given that these women are sometimes literally ‘shopping for the most well heeled father’, it isn’t in their interest to provide a good address until after the 30-60 day period for protest is over. And after that, even DNA evidence often isn't good enough to 'get you off the hook', to use the expression that so many of these women's rights activists are using in these articles. Yup, men are big fat fish, to be hooked, and reeled in. And heaven forbid that they might want to squirm off that hook. In fact, in many, perhaps most states, they can't.

-M

Anonymous said...

This T-Shirt explains the options available: Choice for Men :)